For crying out loud, do I have to do everything around here?
Did you guys know I have another blog? Here is my favorite bad cover so far.
[This project came from Re-Creative by Steve Dodds.)
What you need to make this thing:
- tin plate or tray
- silver spray paint
- newspaper (not mentioned in book)
- magazines or brochures or whatever you can cut up with pictures you can get a lot of one color out of (I did blue)
- ruler (NMIB)
- pencil (NMIB)
- cutting mat (optional)
- craft or utility knife (optional)
- scissors (NBIB)
- paintbrush (NMIB)
- matte varnish
I found the instructions in this book to be a tad vague, and sometimes confusing—for instance, this project is called “Mosaic Bowl,” but the instructions specifically tell you to get a plate or tray.
Okay, first wash your plate or tray. Once it’s dry, take it outside. Lay down your newspaper and put the tray on top of it and spray that mother with the silver spray paint.
Once the paint is dry, you can work on the rest of it. Pick the color you want the paper tiles to be and select pages or whatever that have a lot of that color on them.
Here I have a confession to make. I am cutting up the book Shabby Chic: the Gift of Giving by Rachel Ashwell to make my paper tiles. I bought this book for a buck at a library sale, hoping for dumb craft projects.
Instead I found the ramblings of a woman who is clearly bugfuck nuts:
I DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT THIS MEANS.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t until after I’d removed almost a dozen pages that I found out how much a new copy of this book is going for on Amazon.
The colors on the pages are great in art projects, though.
Measuring and cutting these little tiles is a pain in the ass. The book says about half-inch squares.
I could cut the strips with a straight edge and a knife, but I had to use scissors to cut the strips into squares. So okay, they’re about half an inch and they’re about square.
Also this takes forever. After two hours, I had this:
Which I figured wasn’t enough. But what the hell, it’s a start, and my neck was cramping.
Because the little paper squares are so small, I brushed the glue on the plate rather than trying to glue each square individually.
The circle became ovoid rather quickly, which probably means I screwed up somewhere:
After I had the whole center of the plate covered, I decided not to do the edges. It would look odd with the raised pattern. I had all these tiles left:
Which probably means I could have stopped cutting out tiny squares after an hour.
Because I don’t have any matte varnish except the spray kind, I used the matte decoupage medium I was using for glue as the first layer of varnish. Then I let it dry and took the plate outside with more newspaper to spray on a few more layers of varnish.
You can use brush-on varnish too.
Here’s what I wound up with:
Are you not impressed?
cost: around $4.00 US, more if you have to buy spray paint or varnish
time: about 3 hours
injuries: sore back and neck from all the cutting
You can buy this bowl that’s probably a tray here.
The catalog had this whole Martha Stewart selection, and there was a page of party supplies. At least that’s what I think they were.
Three rows of identical photos, “indigo party,” “gold party,” “sweetgrass party,” “ice white party” “lemon party.”
I can fish the page out of the recycling and scan it, but it’s probably kind of damp by now.
Yes, you are saying, I am also glad that I can see!
No no, no. Sorry. This is so much worse.
So this week I’ve been having a lot of trouble getting off my ass and doing anything. This is because I found out how poor I actually am. Luckily I found this project, which is fairly quick and uses stuff I already had.
What you need to make this thing:
- rocks (whatever size you want)
- catalogs or magazines or whatever to cut words from
- decoupage medium or watered-down white glue
- bowl for decoupage medium or whatever
- waxed paper or kitchen parchment for surface protection
First you have to pick out what rocks you are going to use. I have a bag of rocks! They sell them at the dollar store, and the big advantage is that they are fairly smooth. The rocks in the original project look much bigger than the ones I have, though, and she says they would work as paperweights. So choose your rocks as you see fit.
Cut out some words to stick to your rocks. The point of this is apparently to put your goals or dreams or whatever on the rocks. I did this for one, then I got freeform and silly for the others.
The word-choosing part takes the longest. I think I spent about half an hour on mine.
Next, paint a coat of glue on the rock and stick the words to it. Then coat the whole thing with another layer.
I thought it was weird how the words from the catalog didn’t wrinkle but the ones from the magazine did. Better paper in the catalog, I guess.
You can put words all over the rocks if you want. I was using the kind of glue with the glitter in it, so I needed to coat the whole rock anyway. Remember to let the glue dry before you flip the damn things over or bad shit will happen.
Let everything dry, and you’ve got..
Rocks with words on them!
Should be a big hit at the home.
cost: around $2.00 US
time: about an hour, plus a bit longer for drying
injuries: none, but Mod Podge fucking REEKS
You can buy my sparkly rocks (including my vision rock!) here.
newmeds asked: Wait - how is adding more ribbon a time-saving tip?
I wondered that myself. I’m guessing witchcraft.
As soon as I saw this in the book, I knew it was meant to be.
[This project come from Make It in Minutes: Wreaths by Taylor Hagerty.]
What you need to make this thing:
- 6-inch corrugated wreath form (more on this below)
- 16 spoons, ideally teaspoons
- hot glue gun & sticks
- ribbon: 2-inch black and white gingham wired, 3-inch black and white toile paper (more on this below)
- newspaper (not mentioned in book, but necessary for keeping hot glue off the work surface)
- probably a ruler
The first problem I had with this was getting the spoons. Obviously I don’t just have sixteen unused teaspoons lying around. I bought them at the thrift store over a period of months, and you’ll notice they don’t match. (The gold ones are just for fun, I didn’t use them for this.) 4 of them have a “B” monogram. Also I could hardly find any teaspoons. Most of these are soup-type spoons.
The second problem was the wreath form. Looking up “corrugated wreath form” online, you find this:
Which first of all, doesn’t look like it would hold a bunch of spoons very well; second, wouldn’t make a wreath like the one in the book, even with ribbon wrapped around it; and lastly, is only sold in packages of ten.
But luckily, I was looking in the floral section of the craft store nearest my house, and i found this:
It’s the right size, it’s made of fiberboard or something so it’s sturdy, and it looks like the one in the book.
So I’m figuring the one in the book might have been cardboard? It’s goddamn confusing, at any rate.
Finding 3-inch black and white toile paper ribbon was also impossible. I bought my gingham ribbon online, and that turned out to be one-and-a-half inches rather than two. But there were five yards of it, so I just used it for everything.
Cut a big long strip of ribbon (this is the paper one if you have it) and wrap it around the wreath form, using the hot glue gun to secure the ends. My strip was not QUITE wide enough, and I had to patch it with another small strip.
Next you start gluing down the spoons. It soon became obvious why you were supposed to use paper ribbon the wrap the form—paper won’t sag as much when something heavy is stuck to it.
It was also fairly obvious I should have used a ruler or something to make sure my fucking spoons lined up, because they sure weren’t doing it on their own.
All the bowls-down spoons glued on:
Now you have to glue the rest of the spoons’ handles to the form. This was difficult for me, as my slipshod manner had assured some spoons had no room at all.
It’s hard to see in this picture, but get prepared to have glue strings ALL OVER the fucking place. And when you pull them off, they will cling to you like cobwebs.
Next you use about a foot and a half of the ribbon to make a hanging loop and glue that to the “top” of your wreath. Tie some more ribbon in a big bow at the top of the loop.
It wasn’t until everything was glued down that I took a look at the photo in the book again and realized the handles of the spoons were supposed to be somewhat INSIDE the circle. MotherFUCKER.
Anyway, here’s what I wound up with:
Truly an expression of the real me: nutty as a fruitcake.
time: about an hour, plus another hour or so waiting for things to cool off and set
cost: around $9.54 US, more if you don’t shop at thrift stores on half-price day or can FIND paper toile ribbon
injuries: burnt fingers, of course
You can buy this spectacular waste here.
I’m trying to prove a point to my Elder Gods.